The Ashburton Guardian. Magna est Veritas, et Prevalebit. SATURDAY, JULY 15, 1882. The Egyptian Crisis.
TOWN EDITION. [lssued at 4.20 p.m. i
The terrible news from Egypt contained in our “ extras ” of last night, and fully confirmed in later cablegrams, is calculated to cause a world-wide feeling of horror that the “ crisis ” should have culminated in a state of things so disastrous. Within the last day or two Alexandria has passed through an ordeal of a truly awful kind. The wildest confusion has reigned, and still reigns there, and murder and violence, pillage, incendiarism, and nameless outrages on the part of the enraged populace—including lawless bands of marauders, who thirst not so much for vengeance as for an opportunity to let loose their unbridled passions—have caused a sickening feeling of apprehension to exist in the public mind as to the possible fate of other Europeans who have become involuntary participants in the dreadful scenes that are now being enacted in Egypt —and also for the result of the present outbreak. Although the state of Egypt has occasioned considerable uneasiness for some months past, and the papers have contained news from time to time of a more or less alarming nature, the news of the actual outbreak of hostilities has taken many people by surprise, and they can hardly yet comprehend what all the trouble is about. Following the example of some of our contemporaries, therefore, we purpose to recount, very briefly for the benefit of our readers, the circumstances that have led up to the thrilling events of the past few days. Placed in possession of the facts of the case—made acquainted with the origin of the rupture —our readers—or such of them as may not he conversant with the history of the affair, will be able to follow with increased interest the intelligence published from day to day (and by us, lately, almost hour by hour, in the form of “ extras ”), as it comes to hand from the scene of action. To begin at the beginning, therefore, it may be said that for forty years Egypt, forming, as she does, the great highway between Europe and the East, has been jealously watched or guarded by those Powers with whom her commercial interests are, in consequence so closely bound up. Thus France and England
have long exercised a great influence over her control. The opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, gave an enormous impetus to commerce, and occasioned a correspondingly increased interest to be manifested in Egypt by those countries principally concerned in that commerce being preserved. The year 1879 placed England and France in positions of even greater power in relation to Egypt than they had formerly possessed, for in that year England became the purchaser of a share in the Canal at a cost of nearly four millions sterling, and united with France and other Powers to advance the great Egyptian loans. In fact, in 1879, so great had become the influence of England and France, that they brought about the abdication of the then Khedive, whose son, the present Khedive succeeded to the Throne. The new monarch consented to the dictatorship ol England and Fiance, and the representatives of those countries became his Ministers. This submission to the guidance of others, however, although so long as it continued, it was attended with the best results, afforded an excellent excuse for disaffection. Unhappily, a rebellion is easier raised than quelled —and so arose the “ Nationalists,” as they called themselves, under the leadership of the redoubtable Arabi, whose name has figured so conspicuously in the newspapers of late. It was this man who incited the people to rebellion, and who gradually usurped the functions and the power of the Khedive. The news of what Arabi was doing was very coolly received by the Peace-at-any. price Government of Mr Gladstone. They preferred to let the Khedive fight his own battles, and get out of his scrapes the best way he could—so long, that was, as the precious canal remained open. Thus Arabi the adventurer became master of the situation, and the lives of the European population were in hourly danger. Then came the exodus of foreigners from Cairo and their flight to Alexandria, where hundreds of them were massacred in the recent disturbance at the latter place. That massacre was the prelude to the scenes of bloodshed that have just occurred. Arabi, intoxicated with his own success and the enormous power he had acquired, now snapped his fingers at England, France, and Turkey, and defied them. Then the French and English allied fleet proceeded to Alexandria, and endeavored to make the rebel leader listen to reason. They demanded that a pledge should be given for the safety of the European population and for the maintenance of order, and the submission of the malcontents. To all of these demands Arabi contemptuously turned a deaf ear, and proceeded to fortify Alexandria and make active preparations for war. Seeing the rebel’s determination, Sir Beauchamp Seymour demanded the surrender of Alexandria, and, meeting with a refusal, gave 36 hours’ notice to Arabi to reconsider matters. As this did not have the desired effect, the admiral hed nothing left for it but to bombard the city. With what has followed our readers are acquainted.
War News.—We have now made arrangements for a supply of war news direct from The Argus and The Age, and owing to the heavy cable charges, the extras issued during the day will b e charged for at one penny each. Immediately the cablegrams are received, the extras will be issued, and may be procured at any time at this office or from the run" ners. Evangelistic Service. An evangelistic service will be held at the Town Hall on Tuesday next, when the Rev. Mr Beattie and Mr J. E. Buchanan will address those present. Good Templaev.—Members of the Star of the East Lodge are reminded that the ordinal y weekly meetings of that Lodge will in future bo held on Saturday instead of Friday evenings, commencing from tonight.
A Satisfactory Price. —At Tiinaru yesterday, a block at the corner of the Main South road and Strathallan street, consisting of three-eighths of an acre, with the Ship Hotel and some smaller buildings on it, was sold to Mr Miody, agent for Mr Green, for L 13,500. “Lambing Down.” —An alleged case of “ lambing down ” on the part' of a hotelkeeper came before the Resident Magistrate’s Court at Dunedin, yesterday. The plaintiff asserts that about a fortnight ago ho came to town with a cheque for L4O odd, and after staying at the Newmarket Hotel for two days and a half was informed that he had drunk or “ shouted” away all but LI 3of that amount. He refused to take this. Then the hotelkeeper offered him Ll 5, and eventually gave him L2O. The defence will be gone into on a future day. Borough Improvements.— We have noticed that several very good improvements in many of the principal streets of the Borough have been effected during the past few months, in the way of metalling and forming the streets to their proper level, kerbing and forming footpaths, etc. The Borough Council have indeed done their utmost with the limited means at their command in respect to improving the town, but wo hope that they will not relax their efforts now that their attention has been drawn to another necessary work. A small length of the footpath between The Guardian office and the Bank of Australasia corner requires two or three loads of metal to make it passable in wet or slippery weather. Those whose business necessitates their “walking abroad” in West street after a few hours’ rain will be able to testify to the state of the path in question An “ Unmentionable ” Story.— A pair of “ unmentionables ” caused some fuss at the Court this morning. A man named Welsh was charged with appropriating the “ continuations ” during the absence of the lawful proprietor at the Hospital. Both men had been inmates of Mrs Harper’s boarding-house, at which establishment Welsh was acting as manager. When the ownei of the “ breeks ” came out of the Hospital he went back to get his property, but the boarding-house was closed. Shortly afterwards he mot a young fellow named Warren wearing the missing trousers, and the matter was placed in the hands of the police. Warren being interviewed said that Welsh had sold him (he breeches, and on the strength of that assertion the latter was arrested and brought up to-day. When placed in the witness box, however, Warren denied that he had bought the trousers from Welsh, but said it was from Mrs Harper. Welsh was thereupon, of course, discharged. Warren exhibited so much levity in the box that ho may think himself lucky he did not get pulled up for contempt of Court. Such a case is exceedingly vexatious for the police, who have quite enough work on their hands without the sifting of groundless charges brought in consequence of the unreliableness of witnesses. The accused is also entitled to a word of sympathy.
“Ready Money Richards.” —This well-know draper has just recommenced business at his old premises, East street, and announces some alarming sacrifices “ on account of the war.”
Wakandi Road District. —A public meeting of persons interested is called for the 20ch inst., at the schoolroom, Wakanui, to consider the Wakanui Flat water supply question, and that of river protection.
Band of Temperance,. —The meeting of the Presbyterian Band of Temperance will be postponed from Tuesday to Thursday next, at the Town Hall, when the Rev. Mr Beattie will read a paper on “ Strong Drink.”
European Flax —At a meeting of the promoters of the European Flax, Fibre and Oil Company, held at the rooms of the Canterbury Agricultural and Pastoral Association, Christchurch, yesterday, it was resolved to form a company for the purpose of encouraging the growth and manufacture of that product. A sub-, committee was appointed to draw up prospectus and rules, to be submitted at a general meeting to be called at an early date.
New Auctioneer. —Since our local appeared yesterday refering to the premises about to be erected to the order of Mr W. F. Allen, we have been favored with a sight of the plans. Messrs Nelson and Coutts, well and favorably known for the quality of their work, are the contractors. The size of the section to be occupied by the premises is about 120 x 50 feet, and on this will be erected an auctionroom 30 x 20 feet, built of red and black pine, and with a roof of corrugated iron. The yards will contain pens for pigs, sheep, and poultry, and will be enclosed by a neat fence all the way round.
At Last. —The Timaru Harbor Board has at length decided to purchase a steam tug. This vessel is the p.s. Titan, 55 horse power, and a gross registered tonnage of 97. They say in America, when a newrail way line is opened that it is necessary for one or two of the officials to be killed before due precautions are taken for the prevention of accidents. The Harbor Board of Timaru appear to have the same sort of idea with regard to their port. It is only after a wreck or two has occurred that they have awakened up to the necessity for a tug, the possession of which, a few weeks ago, would have averted the disaster to the City of Perth and the Benvenue.
Railway Tariff Reduction. —At a meeting held at the schoolroom, Springfield, on Saturday, July Ist, the following resolutions were unanimonly carried ; “ That this mooting is of opinion that one penny per ton per mile would be a fair rate of tariff on coal, stone, fireclay, and other minerals.” “That a general revision and reduction of the tariff on the Canterbury line is highly desirable and necessary to this part of the colony.” “ That a committee, consisting of Messrs Enys, Rutherford, Moody, Upton, Smith, Benham, Cassidy, Cunningham, Davies, Williamson, Vale, Concliffo, Redfern, and Shanks, be appointed to communicate with prominent citizens in the principal centres of population in Canterbury, to endeavour to give effect by co-operation to the views expressed by this meeting.”
Christchurch Supreme Court. —Yesterday the jury, in the Chatham Islands shooting case (having been locked up all night) came into Court and said they could not agree. They were therefore discharged, and it was arranged to have a fresh trial. David M'Niven was indicted for having shot at John Glanville with intent to do grievous bodily harm. The prisoner pleaded not guilty. The case for the Crown was that the prosecutor and prisoner were fellow lodgers. On the day mentioned in the indictment the prosecutor was sitting with Annie Walsh, a servant girl, in the house in the kitchen. The prisoner came into the passage and fired a shot at the prosecutor from a revolver. Annie Walsh deposed to the main facts sworn to by the prosecutor as to the events of the evening. The jury after an absence of twenty minutes, returned into Court with a verdict of “ Not Guilty,” and the prisoner was discharged.
Ashburton Brass Band. —The Ashburton Brass Band, which has made very rapid progress indeed under its present bandmaster, Mr George Hoskins, has decided to give open-air performances at least once a fortnight, the evenings chosen being Satuadays, and the place the grass plot in the centre of Baring square east, the public “village green.” The first performance will come off to-night, at 7.30, if the weather be at all favorable, and Baring square having been chosen will prevent the thoroughfare in East street being in any way obstructed by the crowd who usually gather round the band. Of course bad weather, if we should happen to have it to-night, will prevent the band’s appearance, but if the evening is fine the following programme will be performed : March, “Over the garden wall” (Newton); quadrille, “ Echoes from the West” (Newton); polka, “Gazelle” (R. Smith); fantasia, “ Revival” (Linton); schottische, “The Signal” (Leaman); valse, “ Rustic Queen" (R. Smith). Poultry Association. —A meeting of the Poultry Association was held last night at Saunders’ buildings, Mr S. Saunders being in the chair. After the usu..l routine business the question of qualification for cup for largest prize taker in canaries was decided as follows : —Winners of Society’s first prizes to count two points, winners of second prizes one, greatest number of points to take the cup. It was decided that the art union prizes should be placed on the stage of the hall, and distributed to the winners at 8 p.m. on Saturday evening. We are requested to draw the attention of the farming community to the silver cup to be awarded to the class barndoor fowls, and also all intending exhibitors are reminded that the entries will positively close on Tuesday. Any entries made after that date cannot appear in the catalogue, and will be charged double entrance fees. The Secretary reports that entries are rapidly coming in from outside districts, and a capital exhibition is anticipated.
Political Gossip. — The correspondent of the Pi ess at Wellington wires, under yesterday’s date, as follows:—The Government Bill providing for the payment of membsrs comes down by “ Royal message.” It is called the “General Assembly Members’ Expense Bill,” and enacts that members of both Houses of Parliament who reside more than ten miles from the place of meeting shall bo paid 200 guineas per annum in addition to travelling expenses both ways, and that members residing within ten miles shall receive Ll4l. A deduction of L3is to be made for every sitting day on which any member is absent from his place. Prom remarks I have heard I do not think this Bill will suit the grasping section who make a trade of politics,and who are much disgusted to find that L3OO a year is not proposed as their remuneration. They will probably make an effort to have the salary increased to that sum, or else will seek to upset the Bill so as to leave it still open to members to scramble for as large a sum as they may seize. There is still no sign of a no-confidenco motion, and no one seems seriously to believe that one will be proposed at all. The dissensions in the Opposition camp are as wide as ever, and a coalescence seems more and more unlikely. It is believed that the Land Bill will pass the second reading by a large majority, but will be seriously pulled about and turned inside-out in committee. Mr Pyke has given notice to call the attention of the Government to the circulation pf spurious coins in Christchurch.
Chertset Library. — A meeting of the Chertsey Library Committee was held on Friday evening. Present Messrs McDonald, Todd, Childs, Wallace, and Grey. It was resolved to hold, on an early date, an evening assembly in aid of the funds of the institution. Several members of the committee were then deputed to further the necessary arrange ments, and report at a meeting to be held that night week.